LAAPFF 2015 Award Winners!

On April 30, 2015, Visual Communications celebrated the Closing of the 31st Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival with an awards ceremony and the LA premiere screening of the award winning MARGARITA, WITH A STRAW, directed by Shonali Bose.

2015 LOS ANGELES ASIAN PACIFIC FILM FESTIVAL GRAND JURY PRIZE FOR BEST FEATURE GOES TO JASMINE, DIRECTED BY DAX PHELAN. HERE, THE TEAM FROM JASMINE CELEBRATES ITS FIVE AWARDS. FIFTH FROM LEFT: CHRIS CHAN LEE (WINNER, BEST EDITING); SEVENTH FROM LEFT: JASON TOBIN (WINNER, BEST ACTOR IN A DRAMA); THIRD FROM RIGHT:  DAX PHELAN (DIRECTOR); SECOND FROM RIGHT: GUY LIVNEH (WINNER, BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY). (Photo: Steven Lam)

2015 LOS ANGELES ASIAN PACIFIC FILM FESTIVAL GRAND JURY PRIZE FOR BEST FEATURE GOES TO JASMINE, DIRECTED BY DAX PHELAN. HERE, THE TEAM FROM JASMINE CELEBRATES ITS FIVE AWARDS. FIFTH FROM LEFT: CHRIS CHAN LEE (WINNER, BEST EDITING); SEVENTH FROM LEFT: JASON TOBIN (WINNER, BEST ACTOR IN A DRAMA); THIRD FROM RIGHT:  DAX PHELAN (DIRECTOR); SECOND FROM RIGHT: GUY LIVNEH (WINNER, BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY). (Photo: Steven Lam)

THE TEAM FROM ADVANTAGEOUS, WINNER OF MULTIPLE AWARDS AT THE 2015 LAAPFF, CELEBRATES ON CLOSING NIGHT AT THE DGA. FROM LEFT TO RIGHT:  ACTRESS JACQUELINE KIM; DIRECTOR JENNIFER PHANG; COMPOSER TIMO CHEN. (PHOTO: STEVEN LAM)

THE TEAM FROM ADVANTAGEOUS, WINNER OF MULTIPLE AWARDS AT THE 2015 LAAPFF, CELEBRATES ON CLOSING NIGHT AT THE DGA. FROM LEFT TO RIGHT:  ACTRESS JACQUELINE KIM; DIRECTOR JENNIFER PHANG; COMPOSER TIMO CHEN. (PHOTO: STEVEN LAM)

Los Angeles-based director Dax Phelan was awarded the Grand Jury Prize for Best Narrative Feature for his feature debut JASMINE. The festival’s Best Director award was given to LAAPFF alumni Jennifer Phang for her film ADVANTAGEOUS.

Both JASMINE and ADVANTAGEOUS were among multiple award winners.  JASMINE was recognized by 5 awards; ADVANTAGEOUS took home 4 awards; and MISS INDIA AMERICA was honored with 2 prizes.

The actress/writer Jacqueline Kim was recognized for her work as the lead actress and co-writer of ADVANTAGEOUS with the special inaugural Linda Mabalot Renaissance Award.  This award recognizes a multi talented artist who exemplifies the spirit and fierceness of the late executive director of the LAAPFF and Visual Communications, Linda Mabalot.  Mabalot died in 2003 just after the festival ended.

TWINSTERS WON THE GRAND JURY PRIZE FOR BEST DOCUMENTARY. FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: EXECUTIVE PRODUCER JENNA USHKOWITZ; DIRECTORS RYAN MIYAMOTO AND SAMANTHA FUTERMAN; PRODUCER KANOA GOO; EXECUTIVE PRODUCER JEFFREY CONSIGLIO. (PHOTO: STEVEN LAM)

TWINSTERS WON THE GRAND JURY PRIZE FOR BEST DOCUMENTARY. FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: EXECUTIVE PRODUCER JENNA USHKOWITZ; DIRECTORS RYAN MIYAMOTO AND SAMANTHA FUTERMAN; PRODUCER KANOA GOO; EXECUTIVE PRODUCER JEFFREY CONSIGLIO. (PHOTO: STEVEN LAM)

In the documentary competition, directors Samantha Futerman and Ryan Miyamoto won the Grand Jury Prize for the film TWINSTERS.  The film tells the real life story of co-director Futerman finding her twin sister on social media by accident.  Futerman and her twin sister were separated in Korea when they were adopted by separate families – one in the US and the other in Europe.

Best Documentary Director award was given to Jim Choi for CHANGING SEASON; Best Cinematographer prize was bestowed on Patrick McLaughlin for his work on EVERYTHING WILL BE; and Best Editing went to Sara Newens and Summers Henderson for TOP SPIN. A special jury prize was awarded to Kimberlee Bassford for WINNING GIRL.

Attendance was up with many sold out shows this year and audiences really responding to the films and stories.  All of the 32 feature films were eligible for Audience Award.  This was divided into the fiction and documentary categories. THE KILLING OF DR. HAING S. NGOR from award winning filmmaker Arthur Dong took home the Audience Award in the documentary arena; and HOW TO WIN AT CHECKERS (EVERY TIME) by Josh Kim wowed the audiences and won the Audience Award for Best Fiction Feature. 

Timothy Yeung, director of short film 90 DAYS, winner of the festival Golden Reel Award for Best Short Film. (PHOTO: STEVEN LAM)

Timothy Yeung, director of short film 90 DAYS, winner of the festival Golden Reel Award for Best Short Film. (PHOTO: STEVEN LAM)

Ken Ochiai, director of JULIET JULIET - THE SOUND OF LOVE MUSICAL, winner of the Linda Mabalot New Directors/New Visions Award. (PHOTO: STEVEN LAM)

Ken Ochiai, director of JULIET JULIET - THE SOUND OF LOVE MUSICAL, winner of the Linda Mabalot New Directors/New Visions Award. (PHOTO: STEVEN LAM)

This year, the LAAPFF presented over 102 short films from directors across the globe. The dramatic and elegantly executed 90 DAYS by Timothy Yeung received the Golden Reel Award, while Ken Ochiai was honored with the Linda Mabalot New Directors/New Visions Award for his musical short JULIET JULIET – THE SOUND OF LOVE MUSICAL.

Here is the full list of winners from this year's Festival!

=== Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival 2015 Awards ===

NARRATIVE FEATURE FILM AWARDS

Grand Jury Prize - Best Film -  JASMINE (Dir. Dax Phelan)

Best Director - Jennifer Phang - ADVANTAGEOUS 

Best Screenplay - Ravi Kapoor & Meera Simhan - MISS INDIA AMERICA 

Best Cinematography - Guy Livneh - JASMINE

Best Actor - Dramatic - Jason Tobin - JASMINE

Best Actor - Comedy - Tiya Sircar - MISS INDIA AMERICA

Best Editing - TIE:  

Chris Chan Lee - JASMINE

Sean Gillane / Jennifer Phang - ADVANTAGEOUS

Best Ensemble Cast - KTOWN COWBOYS

Best Sound Design - Lisa K. Fowle - JASMINE

Best Musical Score -Timo Chen - ADVANTAGEOUS

Special Jury Award, Best Animation in a Non-Animated Film - MAN UP (Dir. Justin Chon)

Special Jury Award, Best New Actor - TIE:

Brandon Soo Hoo - EVERYTHING BEFORE US

Anthony Ma - LOVE ARCADIA

Special Jury Award, Best First Feature - THERE IS A NEW WORLD SOMEWHERE (Dir. Li Lu)

Special Jury Award, The Linda Mabalot Renaissance Spirit Award - Jacqueline Kim – ADVANTAGEOUS

DOCUMENTARY FEATURE FILM AWARDS

Grand Jury Prize - Best Film - TWINSTERS (Dirs. Samantha Futerman, Ryan Miyamoto)

Best Director - Jim Choi - CHANGING SEASON

Best Cinematography – Patrick McLaughlin – EVERYTHING WILL BE

Best Editing – Sara Newens & Summers Henderson – TOP SPIN

Special Jury Award – Kimberlee Bassford – WINNING GIRL

AUDIENCE AWARDS

Documentary Audience Award – THE KILLING FIELDS OF DR. HAING S. NGOR (Dir. Arthur Dong)

Narrative Audience Award – HOW TO WIN AT CHECKERS (EVERY TIME)  (Dir. Josh Kim)

SHORT FILM AWARDS

Linda Mabalot New Directors/New Visions Award - JULIET JULIET – THE SOUND OF LOVE MUSICAL (Dir. Ken Ochiai)

Festival Golden Reel Award - Best Film - 90 DAYS (Dir. Timothy Yeung)

SPECIAL JURY MENTIONS: 

QUYEN  (Dir. Lucretia Stinnette)

THICKER THAN WATER (Dir. Seung Yeob Lee) 

 

The 2015 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival kicked off on April 23, 2015 for eight days starting with the world premiere of EVERYTHING BEFORE US – a film by Wesley Chan and Philip Wang aka Wong Fu ProductionsSince opening night, LAAPFF has screened all over Los Angeles from Little Tokyo to Koreatown to Downtown LA to West Hollywood.